Introduction Plato Communism
Plato Communism is a heroic remedy for a desperate evil – the union of Political Power and economic temptation in the one and the same hands, which is not wholly without local support, institutional and ideological. Plato’s Communism is a heroic remedy for a desperate evil – the union of Political Power and economic temptation in the one and the same hands. Plato introduces a new social order in which the ailing class in his Ideal State surrenders both its family and property rights for the sake of unity and integrity and the State.
Plato’s Argument in Support of his New Social Order
Private property and family were the sources of corruption in the society. If the guardians ever acquire private property and families, they would become householders and they would not be in a position to devote their full time to public duty and the affairs of the State. The Union of political power with the economic power was fatal to political unity. Hence political and economic power must be in separate hands.
Plato Communism Theory
Plato introduces for the sake of justice, unity and sincere devotion to duty Communism in the upper class but it is not designed to improve the standard of their living. It has a political or moral rather than an economic end.
Communism of Property
Plato pleads for the common renunciation property by the guardian class. The guardians shall receive fixed salaries from the citizens which should be sufficient to meet their annual expenses and no more than that. They shall live together in common barracks like soldiers. They will be served with common rood in common mess. The result of this according to Plato would be that there would be no competition for political power among the ruling class attributable to the desire to use such power for economic welfare.
Communism of Family
In case of Communism or family, there is a system of common ownership of women by the ruling class. Neither marriages nor any form of monogamous union were allowed among men and women in the ruling class. Breeding is to be regulated by the State to produce best children from the women of best stock, mating and sexual intercourse is periodic. The citizens shall select women of excellent stock and there will be held an annual festival where the intercourse among those women and the guardians shall take place. Their children will be reared by the State. In the words of Plato, the wives of our guardians and theft children are to be common and no parents, should know theft own child and not any child his own parents.
Plato wanted to maintain the State at a favorable size and populated by the best of the children produced by men and women in their prime. Abortion, infanticide and neglect of the chronically ill and unfit are devices recommended by Plato to maintain the size and quality of the community.
Critical Assessment of Plato Communism
Although Plato wanted to raise individuality to the highest spiritual level and greater unity of the State through his scheme of Communism yet his scheme suffers from several defects.
- It is not designed to improve the-standard of living of the guardians. It has a political or moral rather than an economic end.
- It does not take into consideration the lower classes in the stale:
- It sacrifices liberty to fraternity.
- Plato Communism of property and family is against the fundamental psychology of human nature. In every human being there is a natural instinct for acquiring of property and wealth, etc. through the expresses his personality and individuality.
- Plato’s Communism of family is also against human nature. It is absurd to use the analogy of animals in support of community of wives. Plato destroys a time – honored civilized institution. In an order where every woman is the wife of every man and every man is the husband of every woman is quite contrary to human nature, and common children will become the neglect or common parents. This in no way leads towards achieving unity of purpose.
- Cut off economically and socially from the rest of the society, Plato’s guardians will lack interest and practical experience born of a varied social life and will be incapable of property appreciating social needs and problems